Ojima Abalaka

Ojima

LLB European and International Law

Winner of the Nigeria Undergraduate Merit Scholarship 2014

Before coming to Sheffield, I had attended secondary school in Nigeria. I also did an International Foundation Year at INTO Manchester. After my foundation, I deferred my admission to Sheffield and took a gap year.

Coming to Sheffield was not a difficult decision because I was interested in a degree with an international focus. It was one of the few universities with an international law degree and this was one of the major influencing factors in making my decision. I had also previously visited Sheffield and I loved how serene it was. It was a nice escape from the hustle and bustle of Manchester.

Being a University of Sheffield scholarship winner is definitely a great accomplishment for me. I was genuinely surprised when I received the email. It feels awesome. It also keeps me motivated at times when I feel uninspired or overwhelmed.

I find studying law enjoyable because it allows me to think more critically and creatively about situations and also to consider various solutions to a problem. There is no one answer. Also, once in a while, an interesting case comes your way and makes the reading less overwhelming.

My degree involves a lot of self-study but I receive immense support from my lecturers and tutors. The lectures are very informative and the seminars are a great way to consolidate what you have learnt during your study sessions. The Information Commons is also one of my favourite buildings. There are a lot of resources and services available that make studying easier. The quiet study areas are a blessing.

I believe an education from the University of Sheffield makes you a well-rounded individual. Besides encouraging you to engage with your subject, the university encourages involvement in a wide variety of extracurricular activities and there is a strong emphasis on amassing a varied set of transferable skills.

I am a huge fan of the Student Union. It basically has everything under one roof. From student services to great nights out, it has something for everyone and you always feel welcomed. There are also a lot of great societies and activities you could get involved in.

After my degree, I might go on to take the Legal Practice Course as a step to becoming a solicitor. I’m also considering taking a break and teaching abroad for a while before going back for the LPC.
My advice to anyone planning on coming to Sheffield would be to keep an open mind. Take advantage of everything the university has to offer and get involved as much as you can. Also bring along a sturdy umbrella and brace yourself for the hills!